The Academy Pointers and Alma take conference victories. Northridge battles Darby and Kimmons.
Brayden Rivas intercepted Kimmons’ fourth quarter rally and the Academy Pointers were able to hold on to win their second straight conference game, 28-20.
The Pointers improved to 4-1 overall and 2-0 in the River Valley Conference. Kimmons dropped to 2-3 overall and 0-2 in league play. The Academy hosts Chaffin (4-1, 2-0) next week at Citizens Bank Stadium at Blakemore Field. The Cougars defeated Greenwood 27-11. Harrison is currently the only other 2-0 team in the conference. Chaffin plays the Goblins next week.
The Academy began the second half with a five-minute drive punched in by Jude Bartholomew from the Kimmons 12.
The Raiders answered right back with a 71-yard run by quarterback JJ Thorne with 2:34 remaining in the third quarter.
The Pointers had four fumbles in the game and lost two. The second set up Kimmons on the Pointer 21. The Academy defense dropped Thorne for a nine-yard loss on the first play and broke up a pass on the second play.
“We can’t put the ball on the ground like that,” said Capp making a note about the fumbles. “That’s something we will work on this week.
Thorne hit Avonte Tucker for a 13-yard gain and DeMarian Shepard converted the fourth-and-six with a 15-yard run to the Pointer 2. Shepard punched it in on the next play. Kimmons tried for the two-point conversion, but the Pointer defense made the stop. The Raiders trailed 28-20 with 7:39 remaining in the game.
The Academy had good field position to start their next drive as Bartholomew returned the kickoff 34 yards to the Pointer 44. The team reached the Kimmons 40, but a penalty had the team facing a third-and-11 from the Kimmons 43. It was the first time of the night the Pointers faced a third down of more than five yards. It was also the first time the Academy didn’t convert. The Pointers were 8 of 9 on third-down conversions for the game.
The Raiders made a stop for a one-yard loss on the fourth down to get the ball back on their own 39 with 3:29 left.
Kimmons faced its own third-and-12 as the Raiders opted to try for another pass. Rivas positioned himself to get in front of the receiver and grabbed the interception.
He raced down the Kimmons sideline for 24 yards to put the Academy on the Kimmons 26 at the 2:31 mark. The Academy brought its bruising fullback, Jackson Hurst, back into the game to help run out the clock.
“That’s what sealed it for us,” said Academy coach Eric Capp. “We’re 2-0 in conference and we didn’t play our best game. We have to get to work to be ready for Chaffin next week.”
Hurst led the Pointers with 21 carries for 110 yards and two touchdowns. Rivas finished with nine totes for 83 yards. The Academy finished with 249 yards of offense.
Kimmons’ Thorne had three carries for 127 yards, with touchdown runs of 65 and 71 yards. Shepard had 28 yards on six carries and one TD. The Raiders’ offense was limited to 180 yards and just two first downs for the game.
The Pointers dominated the first half.
“Defensively, I thought we did well. We gave up one big play in the first half and a couple in the second half,” Capp said. “A win is a win and I’ll take an ugly win any day.”
Kimmons ran eight plays to the Academy’s 32, and there was only one pass play. The Pointers held onto the ball for 12:30, including 14-play drive which ate up 5:56 of the clock and put the Academy in the lead for good, 14-7 with 2:21 left in the second quarter.
Tristan Hawkins came up with big plays on special teams during the first half. Hawkins recovered the on the game’s opening kickoff at the Kimmons 30 and returned it 12 yards. The Academy began the game on the Kimmons 18. Three plays later Hurst scored on a one-yard gain with 7:14 left in the first quarter.
After the Pointers’ big drive that devoured over five minutes of the clock. Hawkins came up with another fumble recovery on another kickoff. This one put the Academy on the Kimmons 27 and nine plays later Hurst scored again with ll seconds remaining in the half. Gabe Schweizer, who was 4 of 4 on PATs, added his third for the night and the Pointers led 21-7 at halftime.
Alma 43, Ramsey 0
The Airedales pitched their first shutout of the season as the defense kept the Rams from the endzone.
Bobby Winfrey led the Alma defense with seven tackles, and coach J.D. Coursey said DJ George “played really well from his corner spot.”
Josh Davis had seven carries for 154 yards and two touchdowns. Davis also added a 60-yard kickoff return for another score.
Logan Hatcher was efficient with passing as he completed two passes for two touchdowns. Grayson Bailey hauled in both passes, one for 24 yards and another for 40. Winfrey also added a 55-yard touchdown run in the fourth quarter.
Northridge Middle School
Northridge 14, Darby 0
The NMS Pointers limited the Rangers to -20 yards for the game to grab another win on Tuesday night. Coach Michael Bowman said he and the other coaches have assembled some defensive personnel groupings to keep the players fresh throughout the game. “It paid off this week,” Bowman said.
Xavier McCormick, George Lamb, and Luis Hernandez led all tacklers with seven stops each. Gary Phillips had an interception and Luke Turman recovered a fumble.
Phillips had seven carries for 32 yards and two touchdowns.
Northridge 34, Kimmons 12
Phillips had his third 100-yard game as the Pointers won back on Sept. 20.
Phillips had 109 yards on five carries with two touchdowns.
Caden Brown added 29 yards and a TD. McCormick had a score with seven carries for 12 yards. Kaleb Kovitch scored on a one-yard gain for Northridge.